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Spotting early symptoms of cancer is vital for survival

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Cancer Research has recently released statistics showing that the survival rates of eight of the most common forms of cancer is three times higher when diagnosed early.

The data shows that over 80 per cent of people diagnosed with cancer survive for at least ten years when they are diagnosed at stage one or two, rising to 90 per cent for those diagnosed at stage one. This compares to five per cent of people living for ten years diagnosed when the disease has reached stage four.

The eight most common forms of cancer are bladder, bowel, breast, cervical, womb, ovarian, malignant melanoma and testicular. The four stages are based on the size of tumours and whether they have spread within the body.

Early diagnosis is therefore vital and there are a number of high profile public health campaigns, such as the Be Clear On Cancer campaign which encourage people to be aware of their bodies and visit their GP if they notice anything unusual.

GPs play a critical role in the early diagnosis of cancer by referring patients for further investigations. At Stephensons, we have dealt with a number of cases for people whose cancer diagnosis has been delayed and sadly this has had an adverse affect on their life expectancy. This research reiterates the importance of early diagnosis and treatment in cancer. 

 By Gemma Crompton, clinical negligence trainee solicitor